Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Yet Another Use For Handscrews

Here's another frequent task in my shop that a handscrew accomplishes with ease. Whenever I brand a creation, I use a propane torch to heat my branding iron. My torch is rather tippy and a handscrew gently tightened at an angle around the base, trapping the cylinder between the two jaws and the front screw, much like a bit in a three jawed chuck, holds it nicely. This setup gives it the hands-free stability I need to safely ignore it and focus on not messing up the branding process.

I guess you could do something similar with another type of clamp, but the round gas tank would make getting a firm hold, without squeezing too hard, a challenge. Also, the handscrew, with its large flat faces, makes for a more stable footprint than other clamps.

PS - The fire extinguisher is just out of photo to the left - in my shop, when the torch comes out to play, so does the extinguisher.


  1. LOL.....thanks for the Post Script....I was wondering where the Fire Extinguisher was in the picture. Fire safety is key in a wood shop!

  2. wow, a branding iron, that is cool. I can't remember that you have ever mentioned in your blog. Or did I miss it?

    And fine use of a hand screw, Dan. My hand screw is temporarily (read: for six months now) stabilizing my shelf..

  3. CP - I agree - too much to burn, too easily, especially shavings. Thanks for commenting.

    Michael - Thanks, and the branding iron post is here. One of these days I've got to get a better, and easier to find, search feature. There is one hiding in the upper left corner of the blog.

  4. Branding iron: Ah-ha!!! I've been trying to come up with a good way to mark my tools and creations: a branding iron might be the way to go...



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